No Rule 54(b) Certification Where Adjudicated and Pending Claims Are “Intertwined”

 In two separate cases, the Court of Civil Appeals dismissed Rule 54(b) appeals from partial summary judgments. Certification under Rule 54(b) was improper in both cases because the appealed claims were too closely “intertwined” with claims that remained pending. Holman v. Sims, No. 2080809 (Ala. Civ. App. Jul. 16, 2010); Marshall Auto Painting & Collision, Inc. v. Peach Auto Painting & Collision, Inc., No. 2090090 (Ala. Civ. App. Jul. 16, 2010).

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Emailed and Oral Orders Not Properly “Rendered”– Pending Contempt Motions Make Judgment Nonfinal

 A divorce case prompted the Court of Civil Appeals to discuss several points about how a judgment is properly “rendered,” and when a judgment is final for purposes of supporting an appeal. Meek v. Meek, No. 2090026 (Ala. Civ. App. Jul. 16, 2010). Ultimately, because the trial court had not disposed of contempt motions, the appellate court held that it lacked jurisdiction and dismissed the appeal.

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Cases Released July 16, 2010

 

From the Alabama Supreme Court:

Ex parte Thomas; Petition for Writ of Certiorari to the Court of Civil Appeals (In re: Thomas v. Thomas)

Complete List of Cases from the Alabama Supreme Court

Cases Released June 18, 2010

From the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals:

Stephens v. Harris

Ex parte T.C.; Petition for Writ of Mandamus (In re: T.C. v. C.E.)

D.E.C.C. v. K.N.R.

L.B. v. R.L.B.

L.M.W. v. Etowah County Department of Human Resources

Jones v. Sherrell

Ex parte Siemag, Inc. and Ex parte Sandvik Mining and Construction USA, LLC; Petitions for Writ of Mandamus (In re: Hagler, et al. v. Jim Walter Resources, Inc., et al.)

R.G. v. B.J.C., Jr.

Wheeler v. Bice

Alabama Department of Corrections et al. v. Merritt et al.

Complete List of Cases from the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals

 

From the Alabama Supreme Court:

Ex parte Hughes d/b/a RBM Transport Company; Petition for Writ of Mandamus (In re: Lee Lumber Company, LLC v. Hughes d/b/a RBM Transport Company)

Underwood v. Alabama State University

Blevins v. Hillwood Office Center Owners’ Association et al.

Sury v. Kuehn

Raymond James Financial Services, Inc. v. Honea

Complete List of Cases from the Alabama Supreme Court

Cases Released May 21, 2010

From the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals:

Ex parte Hartley; Petition for Writ of Mandamus (In re: Hartley v. Hartley)

Norman v. Norman

Hathcock Roofing & Remodeling Company, Inc. v. Compass Bank

Wilson v. Wilson

A.C. v. C.C.

Universal Debit & Credit Corporation v. LeeBerg, L.L.C.

C.M.K. v. E.D.K.

Complete List of Cases from the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals

 

From the Alabama Supreme Court:

Ex parte State of Alabama et al.; Petition for Writ of Mandamus (In re: Governor Riley et al. v. Cornerstone Community Outreach, Inc., et al.)

Ex parte McInish; Petition for Writ of Certiorari to the Court of Civil Appeals (In re: KGS Steel, Inc. v. McInish)

J.L. Loper Construction Company, Inc., et al. v. Findout Partnership, LLP

Suttles v. Roy

Complete List of Cases from the Alabama Supreme Court

Cases Released April 23, 2010

From the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals:

Sullivan & Willis Real Estate, L.L.C. v. Cruce

Moore v. Strickland

Bourgeois v. Hughes

Complete List of Cases from the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals

 

From the Alabama Supreme Court:

Knoedler v. Blinco et al.

Volvo Trucks North America, Inc. v. Dolphin Line, Inc.

Ex parte Harrison; Petition for Writ of Certiorari to the Court of Criminal Appeals (In re: Harrison v. State of Alabama)

Chestang et al. v. IPSCO Steel, Inc., et al.

Owens-Illinois, Inc. v. Wells

Brannon v. BankTrust, Inc.

Complete List of Cases from the Alabama Supreme Court

Cases Released March 26, 2010

From the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals:

Ex parte Arlington Properties, Inc.; Petition for Writ of Mandamus (In re: Arlington Properties, Inc. v. Brown)

Walker v. Capstone Building Corporation

K.C.G. v. S.J.R.

Sagamore Insurance Company v. Sudduth

McWane, Inc. v. McClurg

Complete List of Cases from the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals

 

From the Alabama Supreme Court:

Ex parte Dickson et al.; Petition for Writ of Mandamus (In re: Alabama State Employees Association v. Dickson et al.)

Ex parte American Heritage Life Insurance Company; Petition for Writ of Mandamus (In re: Day v. American Heritage Life Insurance Company et al.)

Complete List of Cases from the Alabama Supreme Court

Stipulated Facts Bring De Novo Review

 Where the circuit court received only arguments on a stipulated factual record, the appeals court gave the circuit court’s judgment “no presumption of correctness,” and so reviewed that judgment under a de novo standard. Ex parte Ala. Dept. of Revenue, No. 1070925 (Ala. Feb. 26, 2010).

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Gaps in Divorce Record Force Reversal

The trial court incorporated a “partial agreement” between the parties into its final divorce judgment. The record on appeal contained no written evidence of that agreement, however, and the trial court had not received evidence on any contested issue. The agreement thus was not valid. And, without evidence, the trial court had no discretion to adjudicate other issues. The Court of Civil Appeals reversed the judgment and ordered the trial court to hold an evidentiary hearing. Willis v. Willis, No. 2080876 (Ala. Civ. App. Feb. 26, 2010)

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Law of the Case Did Not Bar Trial Court From Explaining and Reentering Judgment

 The Court of Civil Appeals, on the first appeal of this case, held that the circuit court had wrongly considered evidence outside the pleadings in granting a motion to dismiss. On remand, the circuit court explained that, in fact, its decision had depended on nothing outside the pleadings. It then reentered its dismissal. The Court of Civil Appeals held that this was sufficient and that, given the trial court’s explanation, the “law of the case” doctrine did not bar a reentry of the original judgment. Drees v. Turner, No. 2080742 (Ala. Civ. App. Feb. 26, 2010).

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